A story carried in the May 19, 2003, edition of USA Today represents a rare oasis of rational reporting on the dangers of living in these modern times of anthrax envelopes, human bombs, and SARS infections.
In that article, statistics compiled by Fred Kilbourne of The Kilbourne Company reveal:
• If you live in Hong Kong you have one chance in 20,000 of dying from SARS. That's equal to the chance of dying from falling down.
• If you live in Singapore you have one chance in 75,000 of dying from SARS. That's about equivalent to the risk of drowning.
• Those living in Canada have one chance in 700,000 of succumbing to SARS. All in all, that's roughly equivalent to the risk of dying in a plane crash.
• In China your risk of dying from SARS is one in 3 million. By comparison that's roughly the same chance you have of dying from a lightning strike.
• And if you stay home anywehere else in the world you have one chance in 100 million of dying from SARS. That's the equal risk you face of dying from a shark attack.
Not to Make You Paranoid, But ...
Of course, if you choose to stay close to home, be sure to get as close to terra firma as you can by refusing to fly and crawling about on all fours to avoid falling down, stop bathing to avoid accidental drowning in your bathtub, hide in your basement whenever a cloud appears in the sky to avoid the next lightning strike, and stay well clear of the ocean and sea-world parks to prevent shark attacks.
Now there, don't you feel better?
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